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Feb 27 10 10:32 AM

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Hi I am new to this and not sure if this is right way to proceed! Is there anyone out there who was at Fairfield NCH Children's Home in Harrogate, North yorkshire? i was there from 1967 until 1972.

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#2 [url]

Mar 8 10 12:19 AM

Hi I was in fairfield nch around 1970 - 1972.  I seem to remember it being called Pannal Ash.
I think I was in house 5 or 6. The house parents wher ePat and Leslie. They had a son called David.

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#3 [url]

Mar 8 10 10:08 AM

hi there, thanks for replying. yes it was called pannal ash (well because it was on pannal  ash road). thats how i remember it too. i have no idea what house i was in as i was quite young but my house parent was 'auntie sylvia'. i was adopted in 1972 so thats when i left. i have little memory of whether the houses mixed or not but who knows we may have met. how old were you in 1972?

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#4 [url]

Mar 8 10 8:47 PM

Hi I was 9 when I left Pannel Ash. I went  to Western county primary school.
I also had a sister called Janet who was in the same house as me.
Plus a 2 brothers. Philip and Michael. Both in different houses.
I can`t really remember too much except the nights seem to last such along time when you where allowed to play on the park!
I also remember I was the youngest girl in our house. I can`t seem to remember many names.
There was Timmy,freda and her sister. I also remember some children coming from Northern Ireland for a short stay.
I do get worried sometimes because I can`t remember things like christmas or my birthday whilst I was there!

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#5 [url]

Mar 27 10 7:07 PM

Hi jacksr and denise
I was also at Pannel Ash, from 1970 to 1975, 8 to 12 years old, at first I stayed in the big house called Wellfield before moving to number 4 with our house parents Mr and Mrs Sullivan and their daughter Ruth. About 1972 Mr and Mrs Sullivan moved to the bungelow (next to the chapel) and we got new house parents called Mr and Mrs Race, denise is Pat and Leslie Mr and Mrs Race?
I also remember freda, her sister was julie. On those long evenings did you go to the big shed (barn?). Christmas's and birthdays were excellant! I also went to Westen before going to a brand new school called Rosset High.

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#6 [url]

Mar 29 10 6:45 AM

hi alan and denise, i am afraid i was too little to recall much which is why i am interested in hearing from others who were there. i was looked after by 'auntie sylvia' (sylvia Lincoln) who is now living in harrogate. i still exchange christmas cards with her.  i remember an older boy called Colin and the next youngest to me was a girl called Susan. thats about it!!

i went to woodlands junior then the harrrogate grammar school after i was adopted.

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#8 [url]

Mar 30 10 1:25 PM

alan, i have no idea what it was called. all i know is that sylvia lincoln was the mother figure to me so i guess she was in charge in that one. i know she was not part of a married couple as she never married. i would have been 3 when you came. apparently i was in scarborough then Frodsham NCH before coming to harrogate.

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#10 [url]

Apr 1 10 9:39 AM

that would be really interesting!!

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#11 [url]

Aug 4 10 9:19 AM

Hi, my name is also Sylvia!  I was in the Harrogate Branch (Fairfield) from Feb 1969 - Nov 1971.
I was in House No 8 with the Sullivans until we moved into Wellfield House.  I spent many years moving around (all over the globe!!) but finally migrated to Australia in 1989.  I'm still trying to find my place called 'home' and thanks to a very special man with a big heart I think I may have done just that.
I would love to catch up with anyone from way back then, especially anyone who sang in The Harrogate Branch Choir with Dave Sullivin.  It would be so nice to know how everyone is today.  I have uploaded a photo taken outside Wellfield House so hoped it appears (I'm new at all this!!)

Click here to view the attachment

Sylvia Swan (nee Bambrough)

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#13 [url]

Aug 5 10 4:33 AM

Hello Alan,  you must have been at Wellfield when I was there.  I remember Freda and Julie Bell.  There was also Mavis and Lawrence Strutt.  Do you remember Keith, Gary Gill and their younger brother?  Michael Parkinson, Tommy Hudson.  My sister Yvonne was also there and moved to No 4 when everyone moved.  How old were you?  Are you in the photo I have posted?  Dave Sullivan in the back and Ruth is right up front.

I still exchange christmas cards with Denise.  Dave sadly died in June 1980.  Bye for now.

Another photo of me - confirmation night.  Taken outside the chapel at Fairfield.

Click here to view the attachment

Sylvia Swan (nee Bambrough)

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#14 [url]

Aug 5 10 4:36 AM

Hello Philip,

Congratulations on this website.  I'm really enjoying just reading through all the entries (or are they called blogs??)

Sylvia Swan (nee Bambrough)

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#15 [url]

Aug 9 10 2:53 PM


My brother, sister and I were at Fairfield in 1979 when Yorkshire Television filmed a Christmas special there called 'A Merry Morning'.  Does anybody else remember this programme?  I was 7 at the time, so my memories are pretty sketchy.  I can't remember which house we were in, but it was about midway along the main row.  My brother and I were together and my sister was in separate house towards the top end of the street.  The only Aunt I can remember is Freda, who was lovely.  We were at the same time as a couple of the houses were given over the refugees from Vietnam/Cambodia and have very fond memories of meeting those guys and walking through the snow with them.  I can also remember playing on the twirly swing thing at the back of the houses.  I can't remember what it was called, but just remember having to hold on very, very tightly!  I also remember the little school we went to, where only the 'big kids' were allowed to play in the woods alongside the playground.  We felt very looked after when we were there and have some very fond memories.  It would be great to hear from anybody who was there around the same time.   


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#16 [url]

Dec 5 10 5:33 PM

Hi I was living in the NCH at Panal Ash Road between 1963 -1966. I lived in a house where two women seemed to run it called: Sister Milly and Miss Faith, for some reason I believe it was number eight that I lived at and it was the last house in the row facing what appeared then to be an extensive length of field, in addition the back of the house was situated at the edge of a field and woodland.

I was very young at the time and lived there with my brother. I had two other older brothers and a sister, all of us of mixed race origin, they lived in another house which I believe was ran by Sister/Miss Sylvia. I see that some of you refer to an 'Aunty Sylvia and I am assuming this is the same person?

I can't remember any of the other children in our house although I know there was as I shared a room with at least one other child, I also remember there being a boys room. I clearly remember going to nursery school, that if I recall correctly was situated in the grounds of the home. I remember going to church which again I believe was within the grounds. I can recall starting infant school in Yorkshire, and being mini bussed there and back, but left sometime afterwards as I imagine plans for being adopted fell through.

I can recall that when you entered into the grounds, houses along the left side which
Sister/Miss Sylvia ran one of them, had alotments or gardening areas to the back of some,
as I recall picking gooseberries with my brother there, besides going on an old time swing that sat several people, in a row, and what I can only describe as a boat shape, where two older kids at either end would have to stand up and work it. I also remember there was a dog called Buster that may too have belonged to Sister/Miss Sylvia's house or the official person who I believe oversaw all of the houses. This was a male who had much admiration for my eldest brother's skill in cricket.

I recall a sickbay where we as children with chickenpocks etc were sent for quarantine. I remember a concrete play area between the row of houses as you enter into the grounds and the row of houses which I lived at the end of, it made a kind of 'L' shape and within this area I believe the overseer of the homes may have resided too, or something of importance was there? 

I have fond memories of deep snow and sledges and Christmas was amazing with real stockings, satsumas, nuts and sweets, besides being captivated by the Christmas tree lights etc. I actually have very happy memories of the earliest part of my childhood spent in Yorkshire, but then my brother and I were taken to London. West Yorkshire became a distant memory that I am unable to forget. At the very least it gave me a concrete foundation built on love enabling me to live out my years to come.

The person who said they are still in touch with Miss Sylvia who is apparently still in Harrogate,  
could you contact me through this sight as I would really like to know if it is her and if other staff are still alive.

It is a lovely surprise to have found this site since my memories go back many years and I have never met or heard of anyone else, besides family, who have lived in what I understand now to be Fairfield NCH

:) Childhoodmemories

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#17 [url]

Dec 6 10 1:58 PM

Hi there my name is jackie, it was me who referred to auntie sylvia. i was there from 1967 to 1972 (from birth til 4 or so) so i have very patchy memories but some of what you mentioned rang a bell as it were, thank you for that.

Sylvia must be the same one i guess as she ran my house (dont remember the name of it) and the timings seem to concur with when we were there. 

i always kept in touch with her by christmas cards and still do and a few years ago went to visit her as my adoptive parents still live in harrogate.

I am sure she would love to hear from you, i think this happens often so get back to me and i can try to help.

cheers jackie

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#18 [url]

Dec 8 10 11:50 AM

Hi denise

i think that their surname was longstaff as if its the same son david, i used to play out with him and he took me to pictures to see herbie i think he was about 2 or 3 yrs older than me

just a suggestion anyway as not a 100% sure

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#19 [url]

Dec 9 10 2:02 PM

Hi all,

I was just wondering if anyone can remember going to Scarborough for a holiday with pannal ash rd. I have a vague recollection of it and also i think there was another place called Knaseborough.??

I would like to hear if anyone can confirm this


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#20 [url]

Dec 9 10 2:55 PM

hi just a quick reply to let you know that i was there when the children came from ireland i remember it was for a period of 6 weeks my sister went out with one of the boys while they were there. My name is helen strutt my sisters and brothers are called lawrence, margaret, mavis, harry, and elizabeth we were at pannal ash road from 1966 to 1974 although lawrence margaret and my twin harry left a bit earlier i myself was in house number 2 maybe you remember us  I do remember two halfcast sisters who lived in fairfield called  carol and linda Mcauley and twins Rose n Brian Louis from i think brian number 3 n Rose number 2 with me  house parents in 2 were Sister Helen she was a lovely old lady very tall n skinney with pure white hair i remember her telling me about the birds n the bees when i was ten or eleven haha i also remember our holidays in scarbourgh i went to rosset acre school which i loved oh i also remember a girl called Ruth Greenhalgh she was also in number 2 and one of the other staff there was called miss mac short lady with glasses n also miss carol she was relly nice, anyway i could go on all day but i have to get my gorgeous hubbys tea ready so hopefully i have brought back some memories for you take care . Helen x

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